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Ratings from the 60's


Paul Raven

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On 8/1/2021 at 3:24 PM, vetsoapfan said:

I agree. William J. Bell had been writing the show for a year by then, and DAYS was really rockin'; mesmerizing to watch. I imagine that the show's lack-luster first year had been disinteresting to soap fans who had tried it, so it took the audience a while to give Salem a second chance.

Maybe this was temporary. I guess shows fluctuated a lot more back then. I looked up the synopsis and not a whole lot was happening. Susan was still waiting to go to trial and Bill was in Pine Grove plodding along. I think the action heated up more once the trial got going and Mickey and Laura started getting closer which was just after this ratings period. I would be interested if the show rebounded toward the end of summer. 

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18 hours ago, will81 said:

Maybe this was temporary. I guess shows fluctuated a lot more back then. I looked up the synopsis and not a whole lot was happening. Susan was still waiting to go to trial and Bill was in Pine Grove plodding along. I think the action heated up more once the trial got going and Mickey and Laura started getting closer which was just after this ratings period. I would be interested if the show rebounded toward the end of summer. 

And honestly, the competition for ratings was very fierce back then, as so many soaps were just on fire. All the CBS soaps were rockin' it, even The Secret Storm, Search for Tomorrow and Love of Life. Something had to get crowded out. 

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I know I'm biased because she's my favorite, but Bill Bell himself said that Susan Seaforth taking over the role of Julie (in December 1968) made a big difference in Days gaining popularity.  I don't think the previous Julies could hold their own with Denise Alexander.

Edited by jam6242
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3 hours ago, jam6242 said:

I know I'm biased because she's my favorite, but Bill Bell himself said that Susan Seaforth taking over the role of Julie (in December 1968) made a big difference in Days gaining popularity.  I don't think the previous Julies could hold their own with Denise Alexander.

The previous actresses playing Julie were tepid in comparison to the divine Susan Seaforth. Imagine having a show with Susan Flannery, Denise Alexander and Susan Seaforth as the leading ladies!

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42 minutes ago, vetsoapfan said:

The previous actresses playing Julie were tepid in comparison to the divine Susan Seaforth. Imagine having a show with Susan Flannery, Denise Alexander and Susan Seaforth as the leading ladies!

I was lucky enough to see them all at the same time but it spoiled me for later years, lol! 

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5 hours ago, jam6242 said:

I was lucky enough to see them all at the same time but it spoiled me for later years, lol! 

That's exactly how I feel about the soaps overall. I was fortunate enough to see them in their glory days of the 1960s and (particularly) 1970s, with brilliant writers at the helm, so it spoiled me and I simply cannot accept or even really tolerate the dreck that is being produced nowadays. Going from William J. Bell and Pat Falken Smith to Ron Carvilati? 

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2 hours ago, vetsoapfan said:

That's exactly how I feel about the soaps overall. I was fortunate enough to see them in their glory days of the 1960s and (particularly) 1970s, with brilliant writers at the helm, so it spoiled me and I simply cannot accept or even really tolerate the dreck that is being produced nowadays. Going from William J. Bell and Pat Falken Smith to Ron Carvilati? 

I didn't even get to see those years but still prefer them. I grew up with the 80's/90's, which still had some good things going for it, and I consider it the silver age of soaps. I think the day that white Ford Bronco screamed down a Los Angeles highway was the beginning of the end. I would say O.J/Melrose Place/JER Days all led to the death of daytime serials and those three events all hit their stride around the same time 94 - 96. 

I will give an exception to Y&R, only because I know Bell's illness would have contributed to that shows decline and he would have been getting symptoms by 1995 at the latest.

Edited by will81
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Week ending May 29 1961

1. The Guiding Light 10.1

2. Search for Tomorrow 9.0

3.As The World Turns 9.0

4. The Millionaire reruns 7.6

5. The Verdict Is Yours 7.6

6. Concentration 7.3

7. Face the Facts 7.1

8. Love of Life 7.0

9. Price is Right 6.7

10.Edge of Night 6.6

Guiding Light at no 1, outscoring it's lead in SFT and ATWT, #1 soap at that time.

I've read elsewhere that ATWT began a weekly run(unbroken) as #1 soap in 1960 but these ratings say otherwise. One explanation is that these are Arbitron figures and  it was Neilsen ratings that were most referred to.

 

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On 9/19/2021 at 6:03 PM, Paul Raven said:

Week ending May 29 1961

1. The Guiding Light 10.1

2. Search for Tomorrow 9.0

3.As The World Turns 9.0

4. The Millionaire reruns 7.6

5. The Verdict Is Yours 7.6

6. Concentration 7.3

7. Face the Facts 7.1

8. Love of Life 7.0

9. Price is Right 6.7

10.Edge of Night 6.6

Guiding Light at no 1, outscoring it's lead in SFT and ATWT, #1 soap at that time.

I've read elsewhere that ATWT began a weekly run(unbroken) as #1 soap in 1960 but these ratings say otherwise. One explanation is that these are Arbitron figures and  it was Neilsen ratings that were most referred to.

 

That's a pretty big leap from ATWT to GL though. Would Nielsen be that much different?

Edited by will81
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20 minutes ago, will81 said:

That's a pretty big leap from ATWT to GL though. Would Nielsen be that much different?

Good point. More likely is that ATWT's dominance started later than previously noted.As we have found in other reporting from that era, one false statement can become regarded as fact.

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On 9/11/2021 at 4:46 PM, vetsoapfan said:

The previous actresses playing Julie were tepid in comparison to the divine Susan Seaforth. Imagine having a show with Susan Flannery, Denise Alexander and Susan Seaforth as the leading ladies!

Amen! This was a high standard for any show.

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2 hours ago, Paul Raven said:

Good point. More likely is that ATWT's dominance started later than previously noted.As we have found in other reporting from that era, one false statement can become regarded as fact.

True. I think too that reporting for anything pre 70's is rather sketchy, since the interest in ratings and other facts regarding soaps was low. Even anything pre-90's is still sometimes difficult to get a handle on even with higher interest and all the soap magazines and such being around. 

Looking at the seasonal ratings, during 60-61 ATWT was only half of a ratings point ahead. This suggests to me the race was a much closer one week to week during this period. In 61-62 ATWT zooms ahead of GL by almost 2 points for the overall season, so it seems more likely the uninterrupted run occurred around 1961 but maybe around summer or after. 

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May 63

Of the three soaps that debuted April 1, General Hospital had taken the lead.

For the two weeks ending May 6, GH had a 17.2 share v The Doctors 15.8 and Ben Jerrod 11.3.

That was the first time an ABC show had outrated an NBC show in daytime.

Meanwhile CBS shows had 30 plus shares.

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